MIS Research Center MIS Soldier receiving an award
MISNorCal Home Profiles Timeline Campaigns Honors Resources About MISNorCal
 Home > Honors

“The United States of America owes a debt to these men and to their families which it can never fully repay…They were worthy, as individuals and as a group, of the highest praise for their invaluable contributions to the success of Allied arms.”

- Col. Sidney Forrester Mashbir
Commandant, ATIS

Quick Links

“Today…[I have had] the opportunity to compete, and to rise in my profession, recognized for my contributions. And I stand on the shoulders of those great veterans, Japanese American veterans of all those units from years past.”

-General Eric Shinseki
Chief of Staff
U.S. Army

Military Intelligence Service soldiers have earned the respect of many for their invaluable work in intelligence and combat. The following is a sampling of the honors and recognition they have received.

Presidential Unit Citation

In April 2000, more than 50 years after World War II, the Military Intelligence Service became the recipient of the Presidential Unit Citation—the highest honor given to a U.S. military unit. With endorsement from Senator Daniel Akaka (HI), Secretary of the Army Louis Caldera, and Chief of Staff of the Army, General Eric Shinseki, the hardworking and dedicated group of veterans pressed for government’s recognition of the MIS as a military unit rather than a service.

Individual Awards

For their heroic acts and meritorious service, MIS linguists have been honored with such coveted awards as the Distinguished Service Cross, Silver Star, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Combat Infantryman’s Badge, and Purple Heart.

In addition to national awards, MIS soldiers have received medals and decorations from other governments such as those of Japan, China, Korea, the Philippines, and Great Britain:

 Order of the Rising Sun (Japan)

The recipients of this award are:

  • George Koshi, Justice Department—Assisted in the preparation of the new Japanese Constitution.
  • Raymond Yoshihiro Aka, Japanase Defense Agency—Assisted in creating National Police Reserve which later became the Japanase Defense Agency.
  • Harry Katsuharu Fukuhara, Japanese Defense Agency and Japanese Police Agency—Assisted in the creation of the Japanese Defense and Police Agency.
 Chinese Nationalist Medal (Chinese Nationalist Government)
 Korean War Service Medal (Republic of Korea)
 Liberation Medal (Philippines)
 British Empire Medal (Great Britain)

Military Intelligence Hall of Fame

In 1988, Hisashi “Johnny” Masuda became the first MIS veteran to be inducted into the U.S. Army Military Intelligence Corps Hall of Fame. Since then, other MIS members have been accepted into the Hall of Fame for their invaluable contributions:

 Arthur S. Komori (1988)
 Richard Sakakida (1988)
 Harry K. Fukuhara (1988)
Hisashi J. Masuda (1988)
 John F. Aiso (1991)
 Gero Iwai (1995)
 Harry M. Akune (1996)
 Kan Tagami (1996)
 Roy Matsumoto (1997)

More information about the MIS Hall of Fame is available through the Japanese American Veterans Association web site.

Defense Language Institute

In 1969 the Defense Language Institute at the Presidio of Monterey, California, dedicated Nisei Hall in honor of the Japanese Americans who served in the Military Intelligence Service. Several buildings at the institute are also dedicated in memory of outstanding individuals who served in the MIS.

 John Aiso Library—Named after John Aiso, director of academic training at the MIS Language School
 Munakata Hall—Named after Yutaka Munakata, instructor at the MIS Language School
 Hachiya Hall—Named after Frank Hachiya, killed in action in Leyte, Philippines
 Mizutari Hall—Named after Yukitaka “Terry” Mizutari, killed in action in New Guinea
 Nakamura Hall—Named after George Nakamura, killed in action in Luzon, Philippines

"Invisible Heroes"

Because of the highly classified nature of its mission, the Military Intelligence Service was largely unknown during the war and even decades after the war. Kept in secrecy for more than 30 years, the few records about MIS activities were finally made available to the public in 1972 under the Freedom of Information Act. Consequently, many MIS soldiers did not receive recognition and/or decorations for their remarkable efforts. They became “unsung heroes,” unacknowledged for their important contributions in wartime as well as postwar activities.

 Back to top

Go to njahs.org

© 2003 Military Intelligence Service Association of Northern California